RTW Retailwinds' E-Commerce Business, Intellectual Property Sold to Investment Group for $40M
The e-commerce business and intellectual property of omnichannel specialty retailer RTW Retailwinds were sold at bankruptcy auction last week to investment firm Saadia Group for $40 million plus assumption of certain liabilities, including honoring gift cards. Assets include websites run by the apparel company, which was previously known as New York & Co. Those sites include www.nyandcompany.com, www.fashiontofigure.com and its rental subscription businesses at www.nyandcompanycloset.com and www.fashiontofigurecloset.com. The Saadia Group asset purchase agreement supersedes the prior stalking horse asset purchase agreement announced on August 4 with Sunrise Brands. The new agreement is subject to final approval by the bankruptcy court, with a hearing scheduled for Sept. 3. Sheamus Toal, RTW Retailwinds CEO, said in a statement said he was pleased "to have received a new, significantly higher priced purchase agreement from Saadia Group, and that it will allow the company to stay in business, if only online."
Total Retail's Take: RTW Retailwinds filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in July, after working hard to close stores and boost e-commerce revenues over the past few years. The COVID-19 pandemic, however, made things harder for the company, and it was forced to join the dozens of other retailers that have filed for bankruptcy protection in recent months. Those retailers include Neiman Marcus, Brooks Brothers, Lord & Taylor, Lucky Brand Jeans, J.C. Penney , Pier 1 Imports, Ascena Retail Group, Stein Mart, among others. Seeking a path forward via Chapter 11 protection was clearly the right move for RTW Retailwinds, despite the fact that it will likely exist as an online-only retailer going forward.